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Are FOBT Machines Fixed?

Are FOBT Machines Fixed?

Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) are a common sight in many gambling establishments across the UK. But, are these machines fixed? The simple answer is no. FOBTs are not rigged to favour the house or any particular player. They are designed and regulated to ensure fair play and transparency.

Regulation and Oversight

Fixed Odds Betting Terminals are regulated and monitored by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) and third parties. The Commission has stringent rules in place to ensure the fair operation of FOBTs. These machines are regularly inspected to ensure they are functioning correctly.

The UKGC made changes in 2019 to reduce the maximum bet limit from £100 to £2 in a bid to try to combat problem gambling. This move was aimed at limiting the potential losses a player could incur within a short period.

Role of Random Number Generators

A crucial element in assuring the fairness of FOBTs is the use of Random Number Generators (RNGs). RNGs are sophisticated computer programmes that generate sequences of numbers that are statistically random and cannot be predicted. This ensures that the outcome of each spin or game round on an FOBT is entirely random, making each game fair and unbiased.

Can You Win On Fixed Odds Betting Terminals?

Yes, you can potentially win on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals. Each betting shop is allowed to have up to four FOBTs. The maximum potential win is usually worth up to £500, although this could vary depending on the machine and betting shop.

FOBTs offer a variety of games, including roulette, slots, and bingo. Like other casino games, these terminals provide players with Return to Player (RTP) percentages, which typically average around 90%-94%. However, it’s worth noting that all casino games are random, and any potential winnings can never be guaranteed.

Can You Beat Fixed Odds Betting Terminals?

The truth is that there is no guaranteed way to ‘beat’ or ‘rig’ FOBTs as they are, like all other casino games, completely random. The machines use Random Number Generators (RNGs) to generate random game outcomes, which are impervious to prediction or manipulation.

How To Play FOBTs

Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) have become a prominent feature in many UK betting shops, offering players the chance to try their luck on a variety of virtual games. Understanding how to play FOBTs is essential for those looking to engage in this form of gambling. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the world of FOBT gaming:

  1. Choose a Reputable Betting Shop: Start by selecting a licensed and regulated betting shop. Ensure that the establishment is compliant with the rules and regulations set forth by the UK Gambling Commission. This guarantees a fair and secure gaming environment.
  2. Locate the FOBT Section: Once inside the betting shop, find the dedicated section for Fixed Odds Betting Terminals. These machines are typically grouped together, making them easily identifiable.
  3. Insert Your Preferred Stake: Begin by inserting cash into the FOBT. The machine accepts various denominations, allowing you to choose an amount that suits your budget.
  4. Select a Game: FOBTs can offer a range of virtual games, including popular options like roulette, virtual racing, and slot games. Use the on-screen menu to choose the game you want to play.
  5. Place Your Bets: Depending on the selected game, you'll have the opportunity to place your desired bet amount on different outcomes. For example, in roulette, you can bet on specific numbers, colours, or ranges. Virtual racing may involve selecting a horse or greyhound and placing bets on its performance.
  6. Understand the Odds: FOBTs provide fixed odds for each outcome, as the name suggests. Familiarise yourself with the odds associated with the bets you're making, as they determine any potential winnings.
  7. Spin the Reels or Start the Game: Once your bets are placed, initiate the game by spinning the reels (for slot games) or starting the race/event. Results are generated electronically, ensuring a random and fair outcome.
  8. Collect Any Potential Winnings: If you're fortunate and win, the FOBT will automatically credit your account with any winnings. You can choose to continue playing or collect your funds using the on-screen options.
  9. Set Limits: It's essential to gamble responsibly. FOBTs allow you to set limits on your spending and the duration of your play. 
  10. Cash Out: When you're ready to finish your gaming session, use the cash-out option on the FOBT. The machine will dispense any remaining credits as a ticket, which you can exchange for cash at the cashier's desk.

Are FOBT Machines Rigged?

No, the betting shops cannot rig FOBT machines because they use Random Number Generators (RNGs). RNGs are mathematical algorithms that casino games use to generate random game outcomes. With RNGs in place, no player or bookmaker can predict or affect the outcome of a spin.

How Random Are Fixed Odds Betting Terminals?

The randomness of FOBTs is ensured by RNGs, which generate statistically random sequences of numbers. This guarantees that each game’s outcome is entirely random and unbiased. RNGs are regularly tested and verified by independent third-party testing agencies to ensure all games are fair and random.

In addition to RNGs, FOBTs also feature Return to Player (RTP) percentages in their casino games. RTP percentages are theoretical values that can indicate how much a player is likely to win over a long period. Although RTP percentages are not a guarantee, they can provide players with an understanding of potential payouts and the odds of winning.

In conclusion, rumours about FOBT machines being rigged are merely myths. FOBTs operate on the principles of randomness and unpredictability, and neither players nor bookies can manipulate these machines. 

As always, it's important to remember that gambling should be a form of entertainment, not a way to make money. Always gamble responsibly, set a budget, and stick to it.

*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Wins etc.) mentioned in relation to these games are subject to change at any time. Game features mentioned may not be available in some jurisdictions.